Friberg-Strunk Street improvement project complete

Effort improves safety, prepares for future economic development

Work was recently completed on the multi-million dollar Friberg-Strunk Street improvement project in Camas.

The $6.3 million effort, led by contractor McDonald Excavating, Inc., of Washougal, involved widening .83 miles of road including Northwest Friberg-Strunk Street from Northwest Lake Road to Northwest Goodwin Road, and Northeast Goodwin Road from Northwest Friberg-Strunk Street to Camas Meadows Drive. It is now a three-lane paved street, with bike lanes, curbs and sidewalks on both sides, and new signal lights.

The improvements are expected to be a draw for future economic development projects.

Adam Kluka, who lives in a home on Friberg-Strunk Street, recently attended a City Council meeting to thank the city for completing the project.

“The crew and everybody did a great job,” he said. “Now we’ve got to get businesses out there and start creating some jobs.”

In addition to the potential economic impacts, the improvements also make the area safer for pedestrians, including students who attend the adjacent Union High School. According to Project Manager Jim Hodges, the city worked closely with UHS officials throughout the duration of the project, which began in June 2014.

“When there were no sidewalks/shoulders it was a daily concern for our students who walk/rode their bikes to school,” wrote UHS Principal Brian Grimsted in an email to city officials. “As well, when our track and cross country teams went out to run, it was also hazardous.”

Funding for the improvements came from sources including a $300,000 state public works trust fund loan, $450,00 from the Federal Highway Administration, $4.1 million in grants, $450,000 in local funds and $1 million from a limited tax general obligation bond secured by the City Council earlier-this year.

“We got that project to complete, so that’s exciting,” said Camas Mayor Scott Higgins. “That’s a great project and we’re hoping to get 38th (Avenue) to that same point in the next few months, so that we can wrap up those two big, important projects in our community.”

The Northwest 38th Avenue improvements and expansion, an $11.4 million multi-phase investment, have been under construction since April 2013. The second phase that includes signal upgrades at Parker Street is underway.